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Melbourne Cup dreams do come true!


Dreams do come true! Even Melbourne Cup dreams – just ask Flemington trainer Michael Moroney who on that famous first Tuesday in November ten years ago cheered home Brew to Melbourne Cup glory.
Four years previously, Moroney awoke from his slumber to inform his wife that “I just dreamt that I won the Melbourne Cup by two lengths with Brew as number 24 – wearing our colours except with a black cap.”
Which at the time did not make much sense. Moroney’s silks consisted of a red hat, Brew was just a two-year-old, he’d had only the one start and he was with another trainer – Paul O’Sullivan.
But Moroney remembered the dream and as fate would have it, an opportunity to purchase Brew for stable clients arose and he jumped at the chance.
“I was talking to Paul at track work one morning and he mentioned that Brew had been sold to Singapore. Later in the day I ran into him at trials and he said the sale had fallen through. I got straight onto the phone, had him vetted and we bought him the next day.”
As Brew made his way through the classes, it seemed that Moroney had a chance of his dream being realised but when the regally bred gelding – a son of Sir Tristram and the champion race mare Horlicks – made his way into the 1999 Melbourne Cup field he was not number 24, although – with stablemate Second Coming higher up in the weights – he was wearing a black cap.
“I told everyone about the dream,” Moroney recalled, “but he ran tenth!”
Twelve months later however Brew was in great form, on the Saturday before the Melbourne Cup winning the SAAB Quality on the back of a Moonee Valley Cup second.
Once again Second Coming was higher in the weights and so Brew had the black cap. And, as the last qualifier into the field, he had the number 24 saddlecloth.
As Brew, with Kerrin McEvoy aboard, made a sweeping run in the 2000 Melbourne Cup – hitting the lead and drawing clear by, you guessed it, two lengths, Moroney pinched himself. It took a few years, but his dream was spot on!
It was only apt that Moroney win the 2000 Melbourne Cup, his grandparents – whose pale blue, black and red colours he still uses – breeding the 100th Cup winner Hi Jinx.
A longshot winner in 1960, Hi Jinx was out of the Great Northern Oaks winner Lady’s Bridge who graced the paddocks of his grandparents farm as Moroney and his brother Paul were growing up – living until the ripe old age off 33 (as did Hi Jinx).
A colour photo of Hi Jinx winning the Melbourne Cup adorned the wall at their grandparents home and Michael remembers he and Paul “looking at it all the time – never did we imagine that one day we’d win it.”
With their grandmother still alive when Brew won the Melbourne Cup, Michael was thrilled to take the trophy over to her and for the next few years he came to realise that winning the big race “is a life changing event.”
The first Melbourne based trainer since 1995 to have won the Melbourne Cup – David Hall the next with Makybe Diva in 2003 – Moroney was “invited to every Melbourne Cup function for the next few years!”
Enjoying every bit of the show that is the Melbourne Cup, Michael and Brew are again in the spotlight this year on the tenth anniversary of their win.
A resident at Living Legends, the now 16Y0 Brew is in great health – enjoying his retirement whilst his trainer hopes that reigning VRC Derby champ Monaco Consul – a gallant third in last Saturday’s Caulfield Cup – is just the right horse to win the stable a second gold trophy.
[29 Oct 10]

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